Maryland's infant mortality rate ticks up

State's infant mortality rate down 15 percent over a decade but up slightly in 2013

September 26, 2014|By Meredith Cohn | The Baltimore Sun

The infant mortality rate has dropped by 15 percent in Maryland in the past decade, but tick upward slightly in 2013, state officials reported Friday.

The rate increased to 6.6 per 1,000 live births last year, up from 6.3 per 1,000 in 2012. No single cause was identified, according to a statement from Gov. Martin O'Malley and the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The main causes include low birth weight, congenital abnormalities, sudden infant death syndrome and maternal complications of pregnancy. State and local officials have been pushing to decrease deaths through a campaign that includes information on safe sleeping habits and increased access to family planning and prenatal care.

The O'Malley administration set a goal of reducing the infant mortality rate another 10 percent by 2017 and closing the disparity between the white and African American infant mortality rates.

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